Council Workers in Blaenau Gwent Collect an Average of a Tonne of Dog Waste Daily during Covid-19 Pandemic
COUNCIL workers in Blaenau Gwent picked up an average of a tonne of dog waste from bins every day during the Covid-19 pandemic, it has been revealed.
At a meeting of Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council’s Place Scrutiny Committee on Tuesday December 5, councillors looked at a proposal for a new litter and dog bin policy.
The new draft policy is needed as part of an overarching strategy to deal with fly-tipping in the county borough to 2026.
Cllr Wayne Hodgins pointed out there had been a rise in dog ownership during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cllr Hodgins said: “People think they cannot use a litter bin for dog foul waste.”
He believed that the council needs to get the message across to residents that they can also put dog waste into ordinary litter bins.
Environmental protection team manager Andrew Long confirmed dog waste can be put in litter bins and household black bins.
Committee chairman, Cllr Malcolm Cross asked what volumes of waste teams were collecting from the bins.
Street scene team manager David Watkins said: “I haven’t got those figures to hand but I know that during Covid-19 dog waste doubled – it’s quite a lot.”
Mr Long said that the rise in dog waste collection during the Covid-19 pandemic had been “alarming.”
Mr Long said “We were up to a tonne a day, which was a shock, it has reduced now but we have two members of staff dedicated to emptying the dog (waste) bins.
“They are still emptying full loads a day.”
Cllr Hodgins said that it was “good to hear that” as people are now using these bins and not “dropping it on the highway.”
Councillors agreed to support the policy, which will go to a Cabinet meeting to be approved in the New Year.
The report explains that there are 622 litter bins and 491 dog waste bins at various locations across Blaenau Gwent.
The cost to install or replace a bin on average costs £275 each.
Between April 2022 to November 2023 there were 114 requests for a bin to be replaced or an additional bin to be installed.
The council allocates an annual budget of £12,000 for new or replacement bin and there are currently 63 requests for the council to deal with.
The policy also explains that the process for replacement and new bins is decided on a points based system.
The criteria for assessment includes how far away the bin site is from shops and facilities such as schools.
How many requests as well as who has asked for a bin is also taken into consideration.
A request from a councillor holds more weight and would add 10 points to the decision making process.
According to the report the threshold for a successful request is 41 points or more.
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